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Florida Man Accused Of Shooting Girlfriend's Ex During Violent Front Yard Fight

Although Ryan Hawkins initially told deputies that he shot his girlfriend's ex-boyfriend after the man threatened her with a brick, authorities concluded that Hawkins' actions "exceeded self-defense." 

By Jill Sederstrom
Ryan Hawkins Pd

A Florida man has been accused of shooting his girlfriend’s ex-boyfriend after a heated argument turned violent, leaving the man with “critical, life threatening injuries.”

Ryan Hawkins, 45, is now facing charges of attempted murder after the fight broke out Feb. 5 outside a South Blue Lake Avenue home, according to a statement from the Volusia County Sheriff’s Office.

Hawkins initially told deputies that he had fired at the man after the victim “armed himself with a brick” but after reviewing surveillance footage and conducting an investigation into the shooting, authorities determined that Hawkins had been the one to pick up the brick first to use it “as a weapon.”

“At the conclusion of the investigation, it was determined that Hawkins’ actions exceeded self-defense, and detectives obtained a warrant for attempted first-degree murder,” authorities said.

The incident began on Feb. 5 after the woman told investigators that her ex-boyfriend, who hasn't been identified, had showed up at her home “uninvited and unwanted” on two separate occasions, according to an affidavit obtained by Oxygen.com.

During the first encounter, the woman told investigators that her ex walked into the home uninvited and made his way to a back porch where she was with Hawkins. A verbal argument broke out; however, she said he left the property after she asked him to leave.

He allegedly returned about 20 minutes later and knocked on the front door. When she opened the door, she told the sheriff’s office the man “grabbed the chain off her neck and pulled her outside,” according to the affidavit.

The two began to argue and Hawkins came outside. The woman and Hawkins—who share a 1-year-old child together—both described her ex-boyfriend as being the aggressor; however, authorities said surveillance footage recovered from outside the home painted a different story.

Investigators said the footage showed that Hawkins was “aggressive” and put his hands on the man “immediately” after exiting the home. As the physical fight continued to escalate, Hawkins allegedly “retrieved a large concrete brick from the yard” and struck the woman’s ex-boyfriend “on his right shoulder/neck area with it,” according to the affidavit.

Investigators said the man responded by grabbing Hawkins by the hair, “pulling him to the ground and striking him multiple times.”

The man picked up the brick and had been holding it when authorities said Hawkins went inside the home and returned with a gun.

Hawkins allegedly instructed the man to drop the brick, but investigators say he began to fire the gun “before (the victim) has a chance to drop the concrete brick,” the court documents allege.

Hawkins continued to fire at the man as he ran away and got into his car, according to the affidavit.

The woman had told the sheriff’s office that her ex had been “threatening her” with the piece of concrete edging when Hawkins emerged from the home, but authorities concluded that the man “was not a threat” when the first gunshot was fired, court documents allege.

The man was able to flee the home in his vehicle, before calling 911. He later told officers with the Deland Police Department that the “man come out of the house and jumped on me” and he “had to protect” himself during the fight.

He was transported to a local hospital with “multiple gunshot wounds.” The sheriff’s office described the injuries as “critical and life threatening” and said the man had to undergo “emergency surgery” in the intensive care unit.

Hawkins was arrested without incident in connection to the shooting on Tuesday evening. He’s currently being held without bond in the Volusia County jail, WKMG reports.

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